Coronavirus updates from around the world


Staff Writers

Australia: As of April 12, the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Australia has reached 6,313 with over 353,000 tests conducted. In the last 24 hours, there have been 21 reported new cases. Out of the 6,313 cases, 59 people have died from the coronavirus.

Brazil: According to the Guardian, China is outraged by racist tweets and comments made by the Brazilian government these past few weeks. Abraham Weintraub, minister of education, wrote “Geopolitically, who will come out stronger from this global crisis? Who in Brazil is allied with this infallible plan for world domination?” in the original Brazilian Portuguese he replaced the “r” in Brazil with an “l” a common text used for mocking Chinese accents. China is demanding an explanation for this, especially since Brazil’s major trade partner is China, and Brazil was hit the hardest with this outbreak. Weintraub states that he will get on his knees and beg for forgiveness if China sells them 1000 ventilators, but until then he stands by his tweets. Health minister Luiz Henrique Mandetta states that they have been struggling with getting needed supplies from China with many orders being canceled without explanation. Brazil sits at nearly 500 deaths and 11,000 confirmed infected people.

Canada: According to PBS, things won’t go back to normal in Canada until a vaccine is created. The COVID-19 virus did not make its way to Canada until a few weeks after the outbreak in the US became serious. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is urging citizens to stay at home and practice social distancing. Canadian officials predict 4,500 lives will be lost during the first wave across the country. They have already experienced over 1 million job losses in March.

China: After 76 days, Wuhan, the former coronavirus epicenter, has lifted its lockdown. As of April 8, healthy residents are now allowed to travel outside of the city as trains, flights and highways reopened. The country has reported very few new infections in the past few weeks. However, the reopening of Wuhan does not mean life is returning to normal in China. Residents are still told to use caution when traveling/ being out. There are still some restrictions in place to help slow and stop the spread of infection any further. Cases are still being brought to China from overseas where workers and students are eager to get home. As of March 31, 698 new cases were reported from people traveling back into the country.

Ecuador: According to Reuters, Ecuador is building emergency cemeteries because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Ecuador’s government received a land donation from Guayaquil, the country’s largest city for a burial ground due to shortage of burial plots. The country has had 3,995 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 220 deaths. 220 more deaths have been questioned to be related to COVID-19. Since the worldwide pandemic, there has been a shortage of burial plots and coffins. Families have to bury loved ones in cardboard boxes, the government is trying to bury 100 people a day at the newly donated cemetery. The land has 2,000 plots. “At the cemetery, they will be buried person by person, without cost to the families,” Jorge Wated said.

Ireland: According to the National Public Radio (NPR), Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar is a former doctor but registered as a medical practitioner in March and is working one shift per week, reportedly assessing COVID-19 symptoms over the phone. The Irish government reports 7,054 positive cases and 287 COVID-19-related deaths as of April 10. According to Irish Central, Prime Minister Varadkar announced on April 10 that COVID-19-related restrictions will remain in place until at least May 5. Restrictions originally expired on Easter Sunday. Ireland’s Minister for Health, Simon Harris, reports Ireland’s daily rate of infection dropped to less than 10 percent.

Sweden: Sweden is not locked down. According to CNN voluntary action is what is hopefully stopping the spread of COVID-19 there. Many people are saying that this approach to the virus is rather controversial. The Swedish government is poised in thinking that this policy will work. Trump criticized the new policy put in place for Sweden, and they responded rather quickly to the comments. Their foreign minister said that Trump was factually wrong about the “herd immunity theory”.

Italy: “Four weeks into a nationwide lockdown, very few Italians are still singing from their balconies or banging pots and pans in solidarity. Instead, flags were lowered to half-staff this week for the nearly 15,000 coronavirus victims including doctors, nurses and health care professionals who have perished since February 23,” write Barbie Latza Nadeau and Valentina Di Donato for CNN on April 7. As the virus continues to claim lives in northern Italy, the south is starting to feel the economic repercussions of a nationwide lockdown. The Italian newspaper Gazzetta del Sud reports that even before the virus and national lockdown, four out of ten people in Campania and Sicily, two large provinces in southern Italy, are at risk of poverty, or have a disposable income of less than 60% the national average. Many workers in southern Italy work off the books and are without work right now and are ineligible for any government assistance. Many of these people are in trouble and are dependent on volunteer efforts and community organizing.

Japan: Japan has received criticism for its lack of testing and social distancing so far, but as things have gotten worse, more precautions are being made. According to a BBC article, Japan only has 85 total deaths and over 3,500 infected. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is expected to order a state of emergency in the capital city of Tokyo and six other regions in an attempt to slow down the spread of the virus. Cities are not expected to close as seen in other countries. Japan has had a low amount of infections compared to many countries, but the surges of infections are worrisome.

Mexico: According to the New York Times, Mexico has suspended the production of Corona beer because of the coronavirus outbreak. On March 1, CBS reported that according to a survey 38 percent of surveyed American drinkers would not buy Corona beer because of issues related to the coronavirus. However, a CNN report said Corona beer sales had not slowed. The suspension of the production of beer took place not because of the beer’s name but because the Mexican government declared a health emergency and closure of non-essential businesses.

South Korea: As of April 7, there has been a high demand for truck drivers to deliver packages as South Koreans continue to online shop in this pandemic. According to Al Jazeera, one driver who had only been doing the job for a month when he collapsed and died due to overworking in poor conditions. NBC reports that although South Korea has been consistent in flattening their curve of cases, this might be interrupted by a second wave of COVID-19 as of April 5. Also on that day, there were 125 reported cases, increasing from the previous day’s number of 78. South Korea is listed as 17 on the Worldometer for the most number of cases worldwide.

Spain: Spain’s coronavirus deaths, as well as new cases, have increased by the most in four days, according to Bloomberg on April 8. There were 6,180 new infections in the past 24 hours, taking the death toll rose by 757 to 14,555, the biggest gain since April 4. Primer Minister Pedro Sanchez plans to ask parliament Thursday for approval to extend a state of emergency to April 25 due to officials struggling to control the outbreak. The main opposition party has said it will back the request.